Are your students buried in post-its? Oversharing with those text-to-self connections? Parroting back comprehension tips but rarely applying them when they are actually reading? Our contributors sort through what works with strategy instruction, and have wise advice for avoiding superficial approaches to developing comprehension skills.
Sean Moore confers with a 2nd grader who is learning the strategy of chunking words in reading. Notice how Sean focuses the student, refers to previous conferences, and previews an upcoming whole-class reading.
In this conference with a 5th grader, Aimee Buckner shares two strategies — one to use when putting a book away between readings, and another to help keep track of characters in a complex narrative where the point of view is constantly shifting.
Gail Boushey confers with Jake, a seven-year-old who is setting a reading goal of developing fluency. After the conference, she debriefs with Joan Moser.
Beth Lawson helps one of her 3rd grade students write in response to a complex text he is reading, talking through how the writing might help him synthesize the plot of the story.
Cathy Mere puts guided reading in perspective, explaining how it works as one piece of the puzzle when it comes to fostering a lifelong love of reading in students.
In this conference with a fourth grader, Aimee Buckner tackles text choice, notes, and main ideas all in less than five minutes. You’ll notice teachers observing in the background; the conference is part of a demonstration lesson sequence.
In this conference with a fourth grader, Aimee Buckner guides a child to think more deeply and critically about a book being read to the whole class, Goblins in the Castle.
In this video from a K-2 multiage classroom, Joan Moser and Gail Boushey ("The Sisters") present a fluency lesson to the whole class.
Beth Lawson shows how to get the most from a conference about series books in 3rd grade. Inferring and synthesis are discussed, as well as the use of written notes for making meaning from texts.
In this first installment of a video series, Clare Landrigan takes a team of grades 3-5 teachers through the steps of planning for a demonstration lesson.
If we stopped every time a child was thinking, wondering or connecting to our read aloud, we’d lose the continuity of the writing. Jennifer McDonough teaches students gestures to give her feedback about when and how kids are thinking.
In this podcast, Sharon Taberski chats with Franki Sibberson about comprehension instruction across the grades.
Here’s a problem many teachers share – students are far too literal when it comes to inferring while reading. Ellie Gilbert finds animated short films readily available on the web are a terrific tool for helping students move beyond literal interpretations of text.
If you are a yoga devotee, you will enjoy this feature. Ann Williams discovers yoga and literature mix beautifully as she helps her 4th grade students explore character traits.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan learn important lessons about planning, themes, and life when they share Knuffle Bunny with a group of kindergartners.
Amanda Adrian knows that a teachers learning new skills need accurate and timely identification of what's next as support.
Shari Frost has a gift for helping us think about purpose and this article is no exception as she turns her attention to the benefits of intentional anchor charts.
Tammy Mulligan works with two seven-year-olds to teach them strategies for building reading stamina.
We want students to discuss books in thoughtful, sophisticated ways in book clubs, but those skills don’t always come naturally. (Wait – do those skills ever come naturally?) Beth Lawson explains how she confers with individual children in her third-grade classroom to prepare them for independent book clubs with peers.
Katie Doherty works closely with a student who has an unusual request – he wants to take home a basal anthology for "pleasure reading." She puts a different text in his hands, and uses what she learns from the experience to design a for lesson her 6th grade students.
Retelling is an essential skill for readers, and it’s one that is crucial for success on most state exams too. In Part 1 of a two-part series, Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share strategies and sample lessons.
Retelling is an essential skill for readers, and it’s one that is crucial for success on most state exams too. In Part 2 of a two-part series, Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share strategies and sample lessons in this installment.
In this conference with third-grade student Jeffrey, Beth Lawson helps this young reader think through the importance of developing stamina to get through the first 50 pages of a book.
In this video from Katie DiCesare’s first-grade classroom, Katie uses the strategy of rereading to help students look more closely at words—in this case, words that rhyme.
If you want to do more with readers’ theater to promote fluency, but can’t afford one of those expensive kits, you’ll enjoy this booklist. Shari Frost has compiled her favorite readers’ theater books with texts and illustrations students love.
Sometimes the pendulum swings so hard in education that it’s hard not to feel whiplash. Shari Frost considers critiques of strategy instruction, analyzing what’s valid and what’s not in attacks on the flurry of post-its in classrooms.
Andie Cunningham has some thoughtful recommendations for books to use in strategy studies.
Franki Sibberson writes about her evolution in choosing books for transitional readers in grades 2-4. Franki includes a handy list of criteria for evaluating whether new short chapter books are appropriate for young readers.
Aimee Buckner shares how to use a mentor text to build fluency through poetry.
Here’s a booklist of delightful titles that will build fluency skills for students — both as read alouds, and during independent reading.
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